Sweetings was established in 1889 and little seems to have changed at this time warp since the height of the British Empire. There are some things Sweetings doesn't do: dinner, reservations, coffee, or weekends. It does, mercifully, do seafood—and rather well. Not far from St. Paul's Cathedral, and kitted out with arcane Victoriana, sporting and Colonel Blimp cartoons, the restaurant is patronized by pinstriped and covert coated City gents who down pewter tankards of Black Velvet (Guinness and Champagne) and simply love to eat potted shrimps, soft roe on toast, Dover sole, and skate wings with black butter sauce, all this while perched on high stools at white linen–covered raised wooden counters. West Mersea oysters are fresh and plump, and desserts like spotted dick or baked jam roll are timeless public schoolboy favorites. The long-serving waitstaff wear funereal black and white and are naturally acquainted with all the regulars.